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Females outnumber males by 13% in Iran's 2017 university admissions

- As the final results for the Iranian university entrance exam, also known as Konkur, was announced on Saturday, it was revealed that females outnumber males in gaining admission to higher education by 49,062, or 13 percent higher than males. Out of 378,706 participants who were admitted to the universities nationwide 213,884 (56.5%) are females and 164,822 (43.5%) are males - 9/17/17

World Heritage Volunteers help raise awareness of Persian qanats

- A cluster of World Heritage Volunteers has spotlighted essentials to conserve and promote Persian qanats, a UNESCO registered heritage that provides exceptional testimony to cultural traditions in desert areas with an arid climate. - 9/14/17

PHOTOS: Mariwan International Street Theater Festival in northwestern Iran

- The 12th Mariwan International Street Theater Festival has come to an end, with carnivals of Iranian and international artists marking the closing ceremony of the artistic event in the downtown of the Iranian Kurdish city. The four-day festival wrapped up on Tuesday in the northwestern city of Mariwan which is considered as Iran's capital of street theater. - 9/13/17

PHOTOS: Iranian nomads' wedding ceremony, symphony of colors

- Various ethnic groups or people of different regions of Iran have their own traditional weddings ceremonies. The Iranian nomads of Bakhtiari tribe celebrate their wedding ceremonies with clothes of diverse and vibrant colors. Photographer Farhad Safari has captured one such wedding for all to enjoy! - 9/12/17

Iran's 'city of mullahs' has a surprising side

- Before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, this city was pious and sedate. The late Iranian American poet Nader Naderpour once listed as its main features "women with scarves over their heads, men clad in clerical robes, a single golden dome, old storks in the sky, one spiritless garden, a handful of lonely trees." Qom became the bedrock of Iran's theocracy and remains one of the country's holiest places -Shashank Bengali and Ramin Mostaghim, Los Angeles Times - 9/8/17

Candlelight tribute held for Iranian schoolgirls killed in bus accident

- People lit up candles Friday night in sympathy with families of the schoolgirls who were killed as the bus carrying them rolled over early morning the same day. The bus with 45 female students onboard heading from the city of Bandar Abbas to the city of Darab, southern Iran, crashed at about 4 a.m. local time, killing 7 students, a teacher, and the driver's assistant. - 9/3/17

Tehran Tops Biggest Improvers In The Global Liveability Report 2017

- The city of Tehran is ranked first among the biggest improvers over the past years in terms of liveability, according to the Global Liveability Report 2017 published by the Intelligence Unit of The Economist. The concept of liveability is simple: it assesses which locations around the world provide the best or the worst living conditions. With 5 percent improvement in the past five years Tehran ranks 127 with overall rating of 50.8. - 8/29/17

PHOTOS: Ruin, village of warps and wefts

- Ruin, a village located in North Khorasan province, is home to women who still pursue the traditional arts and crafts of their ancestors, weaving, which began about 400 years ago and is one of the sources of income for the village. About 120 women weavers are currently actively engaged in this industry in Ruin. -Fatemeh Abedi - 8/23/17

How a Solar Eclipse Got Me Interested in Iran

- Unless you are a space geek like me, you might not be aware that the U.S. will experience a total solar eclipse next month -- the first one to occur over the continental U.S. in over 38 years! If you are in its path (or traveling to see it), I wish you clear skies! For me, a total solar eclipse elicits memories of my first trip to Iran in 1999 when I traveled there to view the last total solar eclipse of the millennium with a group organized by Search for Common Ground. -Stephanie Lester - 8/3/17

Celebration of Iranian Cinema Returns to UC Irvine

- The 2nd Annual CELEBRATION OF IRANIAN CINEMA in Orange County will be held at the University of California, Irvine August 25-27, 2017. - 8/2/17

TIRGAN 2017: The Arts and Culture Festival that Transcends borders and penetrates hearts

- Mesmerized by KamanChello playing, a duo string performance of the Persian Kamcheh and occidental Cello, the highly diverse audience comprised of not only Iranians from all walks of life and places, but also with the eminent presence of others including peace and justice loving mainstream Canadians, found themselves in twilight nostalgic and humanistic trance on earth and beyond. Tirgan 2017, the Iranian summer solstice festival ten years in the making in Toronto, had once again attracted 150,000 spectators which included many from the U.S. world down under, as well as from Europe and even Iran. -Davood N. Rahni - 8/1/17

Artist traces goats' place in history of Iranian culture

- The Paris-based Iranian painter Raheleh Roshandel intends to familiarize visitors to her new collection "Iranian Goats" with the place of the animal in the history of Iranian culture. Twenty works from the series that features goats in Iranian mythology, nomad life and some other fields were put on display in an exhibition at Tehran's Shokuh Gallery in mid-July. - 8/1/17

Iranian TV Personality Who Promoted Compulsory Islamic Dress Under Fire Over Photos

- A well-known Iranian television personality has been accused of hypocrisy after images of her in which she is not adhering to the country's Islamic dress code surfaced online. Presenter turned actress Azadeh Namdari has for years promoted compliance with the hijab, which in Iran refers to Islamic dress that covers the hair and body. In particular she has touted the wearing of the black chador, a garment that covers women from head to toe, leaving the face exposed. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 7/26/17

Iranians pushing boundaries in 'private sphere' debate

- Every now and then, Iranian media outlets are full of news and analysis about the boundaries between the "private" and "public" spheres. The most recent episode began July 7, when Mohammad Tarahomi, legal affairs traffic police deputy, announced that personal vehicles are not considered a "private sphere" and are thus subject to all public regulations, including mandatory veiling. -Mahmoud Pargoo, Al-Monitor - 7/23/17

Shahnameh audiobook, with introduction by Francis Ford Coppola, released

- An audio version of the Shahnameh, the epic masterpiece of Persian poet Ferdowsi, has been released in English with an introduction by U.S. filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola in the United States. American voice actor Marc Thompson has narrated the stories based on the latest translation by Ahmad Sadri published by Quantuck Lane Press in 2013, Kingorama, the U.S.-based publisher of "Shahnameh, the Epic of the Persian Kings", has announced. - 7/17/17

Touraj Daryaee: Uncovering the Splendor of Ancient Iran

- With the goal of harnessing the untapped potential of Iranian-Americans, and to build the capacity of the Iranian diaspora in effecting positive change in the U.S. and around the world, the Iranian Americans' Contributions Project (IACP) has launched a series of interviews that explore the personal and professional backgrounds of prominent Iranian-Americans who have made seminal contributions to their fields of endeavor. - Jahandad Memarian, Huffington Post - 7/5/17

Tehran Book Garden, a major center for publications, inaugurated

- Tehran Book Garden, covering an area of 110,000 square meters on Abbasabad Hills in the northeast of the city, opened during a special ceremony on Monday. The garden with 10 theaters and amphitheaters will provide a good opportunity for the families and children to study and dedicate some time for book reading. Permanent bookshops, an art gallery, shops offering cultural products, children's halls and workshops, as well as a robotics club, have also been included in the big project. - 7/5/17

30th International Children Film Festival kicks off in Isfahan, Iran

- The 30th International Film Festival for Children and Youth opened Thursday night in the city of Isfahan in central Iran. The international event brings audiences a packed seven days of films for children. The festival is will run from June 30 to July 6. More than 50 films have been accepted to the festival, and guests from 44 countries are expected to participate. - 6/30/17

French Iranologist Gilbert Lazard to receive Mahmud Afshar Award

- French linguist and Iranologist Gilbert Lazard will receive Iran's Mahmud Afshar Historical Literary Award for his lifetime endeavors and research on various Iranian languages and translations of classical Persian poetry. The award committee of the Mahmud Afshar Foundation selected Lazard for the 24th edition of the award this year. - 6/29/17

Manijeh Mir-Emadi, Iranian artist and founder of Tavoos Art Magazine, has departed this world

- Sorrowfully, Manijeh Mir-Emadi (Naseri) painter, the founder and editor in chief of the first bilingual art magazine of Iran and Iranian Art Publishing left this world on the early hours of Saturday June 10, 2017. - 6/12/17

Immigrant-Americans With Support From Over A Million People Worldwide Create A Monument To Humanity In Los Angeles

- The Farhang Foundation, a nonpolitical, nonreligious, not-for-profit Iranian-American cultural foundation, is proud to announce that The Freedom Sculpture: Freedom a Shared Dream, a monument honoring core American values of freedom, cultural diversity and unity, has raised more than $2.2 million, nearing the minimum goal of $2.5 million needed to complete the project. With over a million supporters from more than 50 countries following its progress on social media, the Freedom Sculpture has also become the most crowd-supported public monument gifted in U.S. history. - 6/11/17

Bay Area chef circles back to childhood with Persian breads

- Hanif Sadr grabs a baseball-size chunk of dough, flattening it into a circle. He's making kolaas, a yeast-raised Iranian flatbread of his youth, at his Berkeley home and test kitchen. The fingers on his right hand curl down, making it look like a bear claw. As his left hand deftly rotates the circle of dough, his bear claw flattens and stretches it. "This is called panje kesh, an Iranian technique to shape the dough with fingers," he tells me. -Leena Trivedi-Grenier, San Francisco Chronicle - 6/8/17

Iranian Artists, Activists Send Letter to President Rouhani Demanding Release of Imprisoned Music Producers

- Two Iranian artists will have been behind bars for a full year as of June 5, sentenced for their peaceful artistic activities. Today, artists and supporters of artistic freedom from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and the Middle East called for their release in an open letter sent by Freemuse and the Center for Human Rights in Iran to newly re-elected President Hassan Rouhani. - 6/2/17

AIC Partners with Educational Non-Profit ProjectExplorer.org to Create Film Series in Iran

- AIC is partnering with the award-winning educational non-profit, ProjectExplorer.org, to send a small film crew to Iran in Spring 2018 to produce a series of short, high-quality, educational videos about everyday life in Iran. - 6/1/17

The believers of Jewish religion exceed four billion worldwide!

- Judaism, the very original Arch of the Covenant for the three Abrahamic monotheistic religions of Jewish, Christianity and Islam, is now ubiquitously practiced, observed or the least affiliated in name with, by well over four billion inhabitants, i.e., more than two-third of the world population who identify themselves with any religion worldwide. -Rachel Eliasi Kohan - 5/31/17

Photos: The Smile Of Poverty

- Poverty has a bitter name. However, the people who live in the southern part of Kerman province of Iran have gotten used to it. There is so much poverty all over the place that its absence anywhere will look odd. The men and women of the villages are used to lack of basic amenities such as water, electricity, gas or sanitation. -Shahaboldin Ghayoumi - 5/30/17

Iran's Politics Color Ramadan Prayer Dispute

- A debate over the potential return of one of Iran's greatest classical singers for a prayer recitation has provided a fresh test of the hard-line domination of state TV nearly a decade after unrest that roiled the country's establishment. The performance of Rabbana by Mohammad Reza Shajarian was a Ramadan fixture for three decades before it was eliminated from programming after comments by Shajarian that were sympathetic to reformist critics of Iran's 2009 presidential election. - 5/30/17

Nine Iranian American Receive Ellis Island Medal of Honor

- On May 13th, 2017 nine highly accomplished Iranian Americans, including IA-100 member Mohammed Farzaneh, were awarded the 2017 Ellis Island Medal of Honor for outstanding achievement in their personal and professional lives, as well as their commitment to the preservation of their Iranian culture and heritage and noteworthy citizenship to the United States. - 5/27/17

Photos: Magnitude 5.7 Quake In Northeastern Iran Kills Two, Injures Hundreds

- A 5.7-magnitude earthquake that shook the northeastern province of North Khorasan on Saturday night claimed two lives and left more than 400 injured. The earthquake hit 3 cities and 97 villages of the province at 22:30 local time which was followed by 26 aftershocks. - 5/15/17

Iran: The Sanctions Hotel

- At the height of Iran's isolation, a fashion designer and an architect attempt to turn an old mud palace into a hotel. This film chronicles the five-year struggle of architect Amir Anoushfar and designer Shadi Parand to preserve one of Iran's largest historical buildings by turning it into an international boutique hotel. -Al Jazeera - 5/15/17

Iran's coal mine blast tragedy, day 4: 13 bodies still missing

- Searches continued into the fourth day to find the remaining 13 bodies trapped after a blast hit a coal mine in the northeastern province of Golestan on Wednesday. Following a blast in Zemestanyurt mine, 35 workers who were inside the mine at the time of explosion are believed to be dead while so far 22 bodies have been found. - 5/6/17

Tehran Book Fair opens with message from Italian president

- The 30th Tehran International Book Fair opened on Tuesday with a message from Sergio Mattarella, the president of Italy as the event's guest of honor. In his message, Mattarella said that he feels honored that his country is the special guest of the cultural event. - 5/3/17

PHOTOS: Magnificent tile-work at Mo'aven al-Molk shrine in Kermanshah, Iran

- The Takieh Mo'aven ol-Molk is Iran's finest Hosseinieh, a distinctively Shiite shrine where plays are acted out during the Islamic month of Moharram to commemorate the martyrdom in 680 of Imam Hossein at Karbala. Enter downstairs, through a courtyard and a domed central chamber decorated with grisly scenes from the Karbala battle. -Vahid Hoseini - 5/1/17

Tolerance historically practiced in Iran: Jewish lawmaker

- Not like in the Western world where it was belatedly introduced, tolerance has been practiced in the historically multicultural context of Iran, where the Jewish community have been living in peaceful coexistence with other populations for centuries, Siamak Moreh Sedgh, the Jewish community representative in Majlis (Parliament), says. - 4/26/17

"In order to Create, One must First Destroy": An Interview with Parvaneh Etemadi

- According to Parvaneh Etemadi, she has acquired Bahman Mohassess' taste and Jalal Al-Ahmad's courage. She is Frank. Yet, frankness is just one of her personality. She challenges the current form of knowledge and cognition and expresses far-fetched concepts with new modules, which provokes positive and negative reactions to her approach. Last year, her name appeared on the 11th list of 500 artists of the world together with four other Iranian artists, Farhad Moshiri, Reza Derakhshani, Ali Banisadr and Shirin Neshat - 4/25/17

Muslims in Abadan, Iran join city's only Christian to celebrate Easter

- Abadan's only church, Surp Karap, is adjacent to Musa ibn Jafar Mosque. Surp Karap Church was built in 1940 and damaged during the Iraq-Iran war. The church was renovated in 1991 and registered as national heritage. On Sunday, Muslims joined the single Christian citizen in the city to mark Easter. - 4/17/17

From Isfahan to Irvine: Speech, Film Screening & Music Performance at Stanford University

- Hossein Omoumi is a scholar and musician from Isfahan, Iran. He currently teaches at UC Irvine. A new documentary about his life, made by Hesam Abedimi, and innovative teaching style will also be screened (in Farsi with English subtitles). After, Hossein will discuss and demonstrate the structure of classical Persian music by singing and playing the Ney, with vocals from Jessika Kenney, santur accompaniment from Faraz Minooie, and Sina Dehghani playing the tombak. - 4/17/17

VACATION IN IRAN

- In the nineteen-eighties, when I was a child, my family rarely took vacations. There had been a revolution in Iran, and there was a war on. Most of our trips were to the gardens of family and friends; a couple of times we went to Shomal, as the green band of forests south of the Caspian Sea is known. In those days, travelling was all about us pleasing the group. -New Yorker - 4/17/17

Photos: Easter celebration at Saint Sarkis Cathedral in Tehran

- Iran's Armenian Christian community held a ceremony at Saint Sarkis Cathedral in Tehran on Sunday April 16, 2017 to celebrate Easter. During the event, special prayers were said and candles were lit. While Iran is officially designated the "Islamic Republic," among its more than 70 million people is a small but important Christian minority. Most of Iran's Christians are Armenians and Assyrians, who remain relatively free to follow their faith. - 4/16/17

The obscure religion that shaped the West

- It has influenced Star Wars and Game of Thrones - and characters as diverse as Voltaire, Nietzsche and Freddy Mercury have cited it as an inspiration. So what is Zoroastrianism? Joobin Bekhrad finds out. -BBC - 4/9/17

Feast of Sizedeh-beh-dar: symbol of equality, brother-sisterhood

- The last day of Norooz (Persian New Year) Holidays, thought as inauspicious because of being held on the 13 day of the month, among other things is the ritual teaching equality, brother-sisterhood and paying respect to Mother Nature. - 4/3/17

In praise of Norooz: A glimpse at myths encircling Iranian New Year

- Like many other ancient traditions, Persian New Year Norooz is associated with heroes of myths and legends that revolve around such a cherished festival in the Persian calendar. Ferdowsi (940-1020 CE), an illustrious Persian poet, in his book Shahnameh (a long epic poem translated as the Book of Kings) dates Norooz as far back to the reign of Jamshid, who in Zoroastrian texts saved mankind from a harsh winter that was destined to freeze the planet. - 4/3/17

Iranians celebrate Sizdah Bedar nature festival by going outdoors

- Iranian people are celebrating Sizdah Bedar, the traditional Persian festival of nature, by spending time outdoors with family and friends. The ancient Iranian festival was held on Sunday, which this year marks the 13th day of Farvardin the first month on the Persian calendar. - 4/2/17

The unfathomable soul of Iran

- The very first time I travelled to Iran, I was absolutely amazed at how open and inclusive its community was, how safe the country was and how astonishingly beautiful. Sadly, it is blatantly misrepresented in most Western media, a tendency I would gladly counter as a journalist in the making. -Katya Bohdan - 3/31/17

NOWRUZANE: An Exchange & Celebration of the Persian New Year with Iranian, Italian and CPC Artists

- This touring exhibition is a collaboration between Chav Printmaking Studio (Iran), Milano Printmakers Associazione Culturale (Milan) and Chicago Printmakers Collaborative. The exhibit features over 130 mini prints by 96 CPC, Italian and Iranian printmakers. Multiples of these works are currently traveling and being exhibited together at the Chav Printmaking Studio in Tehran, as well as in Mashhad, Kermanshah and Kerman in Iran, at IL Fogilo - 74b Gallery in Milan, Italy and at the Sagene Kunstsmie in Oslo, Norway. - 3/30/17

UNESCO celebrates Norooz in Paris

- Norooz World Festivity was held in UNESCO headquarters in Paris with Iran's permanent representative to UNESCO sponsoring the festivity and 12 member countries of Norooz world registration dossier participating in the event. - 3/29/17

Nowruz at New York's Dare Mehr

- Nowruz, the secular Persian New Year that transcends religions, regions and borders, but instead binds humanity as one since antiquity (this year 3755,) was once again upon us. As families arrived in mostly all-white and colorful gowns to enjoy the Nowruz gala at the newly inaugurated Dare Mehr in Suffern New York, they could not help but be mesmerized by the captivating warmth of the sun shining down on them. -Davood N. Rahni - 3/28/17

The resilience of Iran's middle class

- Some argue that Iran's middle class has failed to cement any political reforms, but their creative responses to repression is reason for hope -Amirah Masnavi, Middle East Eye - 3/28/17

Photos: Persepolis Hosts Norooz Tourists

- One of the favorite destinations for Iranians traveling during the Persian New Year Norooz holidays is the the ancient ruins of Persepolis. Persepolis (Takht-e Jamshid) was the ceremonial capital of the Achaemenid Empire (ca. 550-330 BCE). Persepolis is situated 70 km northeast of the modern city of Shiraz in the Fars Province of modern Iran. -Amin Berenjkar - 3/25/17

Photos: Celebrating Norooz in Baku, Azerbaijan

- These photos Azerbaijani people in traditional costumes taking part in a parade as part of the Norooz celebrations in Baku, Azerbaijan. International Norooz Day was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly, in its resolution A/RES/64/253 of 2010, at the initiative of several countries that share this holiday (Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan. -Milad Raf'at - 3/25/17

PAAIA Hosts Annual Nowruz Celebration on Capitol Hill

- On March 20th, 2017, the Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) hosted its annual Nowruz reception on Capitol Hill. Fourteen members of Congress, including House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, attended the reception, as well as more than 200 Congressional staff and special guests. - 3/23/17

Why It's Important Now, More Than Ever, To Celebrate Norooz

- Self-identifying and proudly displaying our heritage as Iranian Americans has always been complicated -- and this is even more pronounced in a climate of policies and political rhetoric that are anti-immigrant, anti-refugee, and anti-Muslim. Melody Ehsani reflected on how that's impacted her family, and strengthened the importance of preserving and sharing her family's Iranian and Baha'i practices -Atoosa Moinzadeh, The Fader - 3/21/17

Iranians Celebrate Ancient Festival Of Norooz Marking The New Year

- Monday, March 20th, marks the grand festival of Norooz (Nowruz). On this day, Iranians usher in the Persian New Year at the exact moment of the vernal equinox which marks the start of spring. Norooz, a festival of Persian origin, Norooz is also celebrated by hundreds of millions of people from other ethno-linguistic groups in a dozen countries. - 3/20/17

Iran rings in the New Year with message of peace

- Iran has ushered in the new Persian year of 1396, with President Hassan Rouhani underlining the need for interaction and peace in his message to the leaders of 11 countries that also mark the occasion. "The world, today more than any time, needs a hope which values affection, love and intimacy and invites countries to interaction instead of confrontation," Rouhani said on Monday in the message released by his office. - 3/20/17

Saratoga: Iranian-American community celebrates Persian New Year amid political anxieties

- The outfits were lavish and colorful, the smiles were unwavering, the jokes were flowing and the cake was bountiful and sweet. Beneath the veneer of lighthearted fun that the West Valley College Persian New Year celebration has come to personify over the years, the warm breeze that passed through the Campus Center on Monday afternoon carried a solemness, a palpable uneasiness. -Khalida Sarwari, Mercury News - 3/20/17

Persian Arts Festival: 11th Annual Norooz Celebration at National Sawdust in New York

- The Persian Arts Festival celebrates 11 years of showcasing the work of hundreds of Iranian American artists from around the world at the prestigious new Brooklyn venue, National Sawdust in New York. The 11th Annual Persian Arts Festival will feature multiple art forms including short films curated by west coast's Noor Iranian Film Festival, family-friendly performances of Fictionville Studio's shadow puppet masterpiece, "Zahhak, The Legend of the Serpent King", a panel discussion featuring Iranian American artists and scholars,... - 3/17/17

#LiveTogether Norooz Challenge Goes Viral

- Washington Governor Jay Inslee and Lt. Governor Cyrus Habib took part in the Norooz Challenge yesterday, a new viral trend emerging across America ahead of the Iranian New Year, which falls on March 20. "I'm so glad you're here," Inslee said to Habib on Facebook Live. "One of the best things to happen to the State of Washington is to have an Iranian-American leader and you're doing a super job. What a great reason to celebrate Persian New Year. Norooz Mobarak [Happy New Year]," Inslee added. - Davar Ardalan, Huffington Post - 3/17/17

The "#LiveTogether Norooz Challenge" spreading message of tolerance

- Over the past few days, the viral "Norooz Challenge" has brought Americans & Iranians together to broadcast "Happy New Year" in Persian, then challenge friends to follow suit. The Norooz Challenge is the first of several challenges in the #LiveTogether campaign, with a theme of crossing borders and cultures to put our similarities above our differences. - 3/16/17

Happy Chaharshanbeh Souri, Fire Festival Of The Last Wednesday Of The Persian New Year!

- On Tuesday night, Iranians celebrated the ancient Persian tradition of Last-Wednesday-of-the-Year (Chaharshanbeh Souri) as a prelude to Persian New Year Norooz. On the evening of Chaharshanbeh Souri, people make fires and jump over them. - 3/14/17

Photos: The "Waiting Porch" unveiled at Valiasr Square in Tehran

- A newly built plaza dubbed "The Waiting Porch", was unveiled at Valiasr Square in Tehran last Friday evening in a ceremony attended by the Mayor Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf. The plaza covers over 42,000 square meters in seven floors underneath the Valiasr Square, which is a major square in central Tehran. The plaza aims to host cultural events, exhibitions and book fairs all year round. - 3/13/17

Seven family members killed in fireworks explosion in northwset Iran

- At least seven people have lost their lives in the northwestern Iranian province of Ardabil after an accident in which a teenager making homemade fireworks for a festival ahead of the Persian New Year (Norooz) blew up his home. - 3/11/17

Photos: Norooz Celebration in Kurdish Village of Palangan

- The arrival of spring coincides with the beginning of the Persian New Year Norooz. This is a festive occasion for Iranians and many other countries in the region. People in different parts of Iran celebrate Norooz with their local customs and traditions. One of the most joyful and colorful celebrations is held at the village of Palangan in Iran's Kurdestan province -Mosleh Pirkhezranyan - 3/10/17

PHOTOS: House-Cleaning in Esfidan Village, North Khorasan, to welcome Norooz

- These photos show the people in the village of Esfidan busy with their Norooz house cleaning ritual. Esfidan is one of the most beautiful villages in Iran, and it enjoys a pleasant climate. The village is located 45 kilometers southeast of the city of Bojnord in a lush valley surrounded with tall mountains. Esfidan is a popular tourist attraction in North Khorasan. - 3/9/17

PHOTOS: House-Cleaning In Mazandaran Villages To Welcome Norooz

- Spring is around the corner. The arrival of spring also coincides with the beginning of the Persian New Year Norooz. This is a festive occasion for Iranians and many other countries in the region. The arrival of new year also means a fresh start. Cleaning and dusting the house in advance of arrival of Norouz is one of the important customs for the people. These photos show the people in the villages of Mazandaran province in northern Iran busy with house cleaning to welcome Norooz. - 3/6/17

Persian New Year (Norooz) 2017 Celebration in San Jose, California

- The Iranian Federated Women's Club (IFWC), in partnership with the City of San Jose District 10 and Councilmember Johnny Khamis, is proud to present Nowruz (Norooz), the celebration of the Persian new year, on Friday March 24, at the San Jose City Hall Rotunda, at 200 E. Santa Clara Street in San Jose, from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. The event is open to the public, and features live music, dance, and Persian cuisine and art. - 3/4/17

Celebrate the Iranian New Year with the 9th Annual Nowruz Festival on March 12, 2017 at UCLA

- The most colorful festival of the year marking the arrival of spring, Nowruz (the Iranian New Year) is back. Bringing together joyous sounds and spectacle for all to enjoy, the event is bigger than ever for its Ninth Annual Nowruz festival. The Farhang Foundation debuts a new home at UCLA's Royce Hall and Dickson Court, having outgrown the previous venue at LACMA. - 2/22/17

Book: Norooz with My Family

- A new book on Norooz, the Persian New Year, authored by Dr. Khodadad Kaviani: A sister and her brother share with classmates their Norooz (New Year) experiences. They live in Yazd, Iran, the city of beautiful wind catchers. They talk about spring cleaning, carpet washing, chaarshanbeh soori, preparing the Haft-Seen, plus other activities during this festive time of year. - 2/22/17

Briefing Report: Tracking Twitter's Growing Popularity in Iran

- Twitter's growth in Iran can be tracked through three distinct stages; when it was banned in 2009, during the nuclear talks in 2013-15, and after the ban was partially lifted in 2016. - 2/22/17

PHOTOS: Life in the Iranian village Belker

- People in the beautiful and pristine village of Belker, 85 kilometers from Marivan, in Iran's western province of Kordestan, live a hard but happy life. Despite freezing winter days and recurrent snow storms the locals have learned the ways to cope with their condition. -Amir Ali Razzaghi - 2/21/17

Pourdavoud Center for the Study of the Iranian World established at UCLA

- UCLA has established the Pourdavoud Center for the Study of the Iranian World, the first center in the Western Hemisphere that aims to advance the knowledge of ancient Iranian languages, history and religions. The Pourdavoud Center was named for the late Professor Ebrahim Pourdavoud, a pioneering scholar of ancient Persia, and was made possible by a gift from his granddaughter, Dr. Anahita Naficy Lovelace, and her husband, James B. Lovelace. - 2/16/17

Glamour and heartbreak: The precious jewels of Iran's 'sad-eyed' princess

- Soraya Esfandiary Bakhtiari never imagined that one day she would marry Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, and that she would reign over her country, Iran. She was queen for seven years, from 1951 to 1958. -Vincent Meylan, CNN - 2/13/17

Iran's Khamenei and Trump spar, and sports and academic ties feel blowback

- Among the first casualties of President Trump's immigration ban was the United States wrestling team - victims of a reciprocal Iranian ban that would have kept Americans out of the Freestyle World Cup in Iran in mid-February. Then Mr. Trump's ban was suspended by court order. Iran responded by rescinding its ban. The American wrestlers could travel. Not so lucky were two Iranian archers planning to take part in a stage of the indoor Archery World Cup in Las Vegas this weekend. Their US visas were never issued. -Scott Peterson, CSM - 2/8/17

VIDEO: Foreign Tour Guides Describe Iran With Body Language

- The 17th World Federation of Tourist Guide Associations Convention was held in Tehran from January 28 to February 1, 2017. On the sidelines of the convention, the international tour guides were asked to describe their journey to Iran with body language gestures. - 2/6/17

Does Shiraz wine come from Iran?

- Until the Islamic revolution, Iran had a tradition of wine-making which stretched back centuries. It centred on the ancient city of Shiraz - but is there a connection between the place and the wine of the same name now produced and drunk across the world? -Anahita Sham, BBC - 2/5/17

Winner of Farhang's annual Nowruz banner competition announced

- Each year, Farhang Foundation, through its Nowruz Banner Competition, reaches out to a global community of artists, illustrators, and graphic designers, enlisting their talents to create and submit original designs that capture the essence of Nowruz. During the weeks leading to Farhang's annual Nowruz celebration, the winning design is featured on large street banners in prominent areas of Los Angeles announcing the event. - 2/2/17



Study of Mental Health in Tehran-Iran: An Epidemiological Approach

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